The Social Impacts of Mobile Phones and Text Messaging

In our technologically rich era, we have learned to embrace the wide variety of technological gadgets available to us today. One of the most popular electronic devices that has taken the communications market by storm is the mobile phone. Everyday a growing number of individuals located all around the world, purchase mobile phones and sign up for service providers. Due to its rapid growth and success we have managed to grow accustomed to having the mobile phone incorporated into our daily lives, in such a short period of time. Usage of the mobile phone and text messaging has socially impacted the user's lives in a number of ways. Social impacts of the cell phone and Short Message Service (SMS) differs across areas of the world since causes that prod an individual or company to use a mobile phone varies.

The positive impacts mobile phones and SMS bring to Kenya, Africa are that it helps preserve wildlife in addition to protection agricultural land. In addition, cell phones are able to connect individuals in refugee camps to thier beloved ones and help organize and launch protests for human rights issues. They have also been able to help the African Medical Research Foundation by improving the healthcare offered to people living in remote areas. The drawback of the mobile phone is has increased the theft rate and expanded the underground economy. Worst of all, it has decreased dependence among landline phone, decreasing government revenues in this sector, thus, decreasing the employment opportunities offered.

Hong Kong
Positive social impacts brought to Hong Kong by cell phones and text messaging are it helps fuel the the economy due to constant purchase of cell phones by individuals and the increased ability of the government to reach the general public at a quicker pace. Also, cell phones have increased employment opportunities within communication companies Hong Kong due to the mass appeal of cell phones to its population. However, problems cell phones have created in Hong Kong is the abuse of the built-in digital cameras in mobile phones. Some ruthless citizens are known to take compromising or embarrassing candid shots of others to display for others on the World Wide Web. Furthermore, wealth and status gaps are becoming more apparent as the mobile phone is just another material object where one can display their status and wealth.

Although the social impacts of mobile phones and SMS varies in different countries, some of its effects still apply on a global basis. The majority of mobile phone users use their cell phones due to its convenience and ability to connect themselves to others when and where they want. Regardless of the nation you live in, drawbacks of the cell phone is it exposes its users to Electromagnetic Fields which could cause health risks. Two other major disadvantage of the cell phone and SMS is it increases the probability of security and privacy violations and also injuries to cell phone users who chat while driving. Despite from some of the drawbacks of the mobile phone and text messaging, its advantages far outweigh its disadvantages which is precisely the reason why the demand for mobile phone and its services are ever increasing.


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By:    Andrea Chan    Jacky Lau    Stephanie Liu    Emmanual Mabe